Most outdoorsmen immediately think of blue crabs smothered in old bay seasoning when someone mentions the Chesapeake Bay state, however Maryland certainly has more to offer. The abundant waterways and marshes are not only filled with rich colonial history and delicious seafood, but are also home to some extremely unique species that cannot be found anywhere else in the United States.
Hunting In Maryland
Maryland Sika Deer Hunting
Imagine if you could combine your love of whitetail deer hunting from a tree stand, the screaming bugle of a bull elk, and the beauty of your favorite duck marsh on a crisp morning. Found deep in the swamp, the Sika deer accomplishes all of these things. Originally from Japan and transplanted in the early 1900s, these mystical deer are a secret kept close to the vest by local hunters, as they bear arguably the greatest game meat around. Sika deer are on the smaller size, and average around 90 pounds for a stag (male) and 70 pounds for a hind (female), but the quality of their meat makes up for their small stature. Stags are frequently hunted from stands during the rut and are drawn close using a bugle call. This allows for all manner of weapons to be used with great success throughout the season. A great deal of sika are taken on private land, but there are a few public options. Two pieces of ground with good numbers of deer are Taylor’s Island wildlife management area and Fishing Bay wildlife management area. Hunters are allowed to take three deer total, with only one being antlered, which is plenty to fill the freezer with the high-quality meat. There is no need to experience post season depression after your sika tags are filled though, as Maryland also has a strong population of whitetail deer that can be hunted without any additional license costs.
Maryland Whitetail Deer Hunting
Maryland is home to over 214,000 whitetail deer, and has no shortage of monster bucks, with one giant taken in 2007 that scored 248 7/8 inches. Hunters are allowed two bucks and as many does as they wish to purchase tags for, which provides plenty of opportunities to fill the freezer while searching for that trophy wall-hanger buck. Licenses are very reasonable, especially when considering the liberal bag limits. However, if you prefer teeth and claws to antlers, you won’t want to miss out on Maryland bear hunting.
Maryland Black Bear Hunting
Many hunters jump at the opportunity to hunt one of the 2,000 black bears that call the state home. These bears are predominantly found in the thick forests of Allegany, Frederick, Garret, and Washington counties, and tags are allocated through a lottery system. Hunters must apply for this lottery during the summer for a small fee, and then receive their results early September for the following October season. Hunters must only purchase a base license in conjunction with drawing the tag, which provides an inexpensive option to hunt a fall bear. Alternatively, if nothing gets you going like a gobble off the roost, you need to check out Maryland turkey hunting.
Maryland Turkey Hunting
Maryland is home to a growing population of over 33,000 eastern turkeys that are subject to little pressure. Licenses are reasonable in comparison to surrounding states, and the two-bird season limit makes Maryland a good option to chase a spring gobbler. On the other hand, if you prefer donning a pair of camo waders and slinging steel shot at decoying birds, Maryland has phenomenal duck hunting.
Maryland Waterfowl Hunting
Being that Maryland has a lot of variety in its terrain, there are many options for different styles of waterfowl hunting. Starting on the coast, hunters can chase large diver ducks like scoters, scaup, canvasbacks, goldeneyes, buffleheads, and long-tailed ducks in the salt amongst huge decoy spreads. Just be sure to bring plenty of shells, as these ducks are very fast flyers. Inland, hunters see great numbers of mallards, wood ducks, gadwalls, black ducks, and teal that are hunted over freshwater ponds and sloughs. Being that Maryland is in the Atlantic flyway, there are also great opportunities to hunt geese over both water and fields. Again, licenses are very reasonable for non-residents, making Maryland a great option to get after a variety of species this fall.
Book Your Next Maryland Hunt
Whether you are looking to hear the bugle of the elusive sika deer, arrow the whitetail of a lifetime, or knock down some divers over the Chesapeake, Maryland has opportunities for hunters of all skill levels and interests. Check out our catalog of expert Guides and Outfitters at HuntAnywhere.com, and book the trip of a lifetime.